Phoenix Rasbora Care: Complete Guide for Beginners

To care for Phoenix Rasbora, first, set up a well-planted aquarium with suitable water conditions. Then, provide a varied, carnivorous diet for optimal health and coloration. Lastly, choose peaceful, compatible tank mates and maintain a regular care schedule to ensure a thriving environment.

phoenix rasbora

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Phoenix Rasbora Species Profile and Identification

Phoenix Rasboras, scientifically known as Boraras merah, are vibrant nano fish that make a perfect addition to your aquarium. These peaceful, schooling fish display fascinating behavior and thrive well with other small peaceful fish and invertebrates.

Identifying Phoenix Rasbora

  • Size: Adult Phoenix Rasboras typically grow up to 0.6-0.8 inches (1.5-2 cm) with a purchase size of 0.25-0.5 inch (0.6-1.3 cm).
  • Color: Males exhibit a beautiful ruby-red coloration when provided with optimal care and diet, while females are slightly duller in appearance.
  • Markings: The Phoenix Rasbora has dark markings that are usually more broken and red compared to the similar Chili Rasbora.

To differentiate between the two, keep an eye on their markings and colors. Phoenix Rasboras have red coloration confined within the dark markings, whereas their counterparts, the Chili Rasbora, have a more uniform distribution of color.

Remember that the appearance of these fish is also affected by their diet and tank conditions. Maintaining ideal water parameters and diet will help you showcase their distinctive features and make identification easier.

To identify a Phoenix Rasbora, look for the following key characteristics:

  • Small size with adults reaching up to 0.6-0.8 inches
  • Vibrant ruby-red coloration in males, especially when kept in optimal conditions
  • Distinct dark broken markings with red color confined to such areas

Phoenix Rasbora Supplies

When starting a Phoenix Rasbora aquarium, there are some essential supplies you’ll need to ensure the health and happiness of your fish. Below is a quick list of the items required:

  • Aquarium: This should be at least 5 gallons in size, with a secure lid to prevent the fish from jumping out.
  • Filtration System: A good filtration system is crucial for maintaining clean water. Choose a gentle filter, as Rasboras enjoy a slower water flow.
  • Heater: Phoenix Rasboras prefer temperatures between 68°F and 82.4°F, so having a heater is important for maintaining a stable temperature, especially if you live in a cooler climate.
  • Thermometer: Monitoring the temperature of your tank is essential to keep your fish healthy and comfortable.
  • Substrate: Opt for a dark-colored substrate, like sand or fine gravel. This helps mimic their natural habitat and enhances their bright coloration.
  • Plants and Hardscape: Including live plants, driftwood, and rocks is essential for creating a natural environment and providing hiding spots. Floating plants are especially loved by Phoenix Rasboras.
  • Lighting: Low to medium intensity lighting is suitable for a Phoenix Rasbora tank, as they are sensitive to bright lights.
  • Water Conditioner: A good quality water conditioner is a must for neutralizing harmful chemicals in tap water.
  • Water Testing Kit: Regularly testing the pH, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate levels in your aquarium is vital for ensuring optimal water quality.
  • Fish Food: Provide a varied diet, including high-quality flakes, pellets, and freeze-dried or frozen foods suitable for micropredators.

By having these supplies on hand, you’ll be well-prepared to create a thriving and healthy habitat for your Phoenix Rasboras. Remember to research and invest in quality equipment and supplies, ensuring a long and happy life for your aquatic pets.

Phoenix Rasbora Tank Setup

When setting up a tank for Phoenix Rasbora, it is essential to recreate their natural habitat to help them thrive and stay healthy. The ideal tank setup should have a minimum tank size of 5 gallons to accommodate their schooling behavior.

phoenix rasbora boraras merah

  • Create an environment with slow water flow by selecting a gentle filter or placing plants and decorations to break up water currents. This replicates their natural slow-moving water habitats.
  • Opt for a dark substrate to enhance the Phoenix Rasbora’s vibrant coloration, which will be displayed optimally in such an environment. A dark, sandy substrate is perfect for replicating their natural surroundings.
  • Add live plants to the aquarium, as they provide shelter and create a more authentic environment. Include floating plants to soften light penetration and offer additional shelter, mimicking their native habitats.
  • Incorporate tannins and leaf litter to replicate the acidic water conditions of their natural habitat. This can be done by adding Indian Almond leaves or other types of leaf matter to the tank. Tannins will lower the pH, creating the acidic conditions Phoenix Rasboras prefer.
  • To prevent injuries, choose smooth-edged decorations and avoid sharp objects. Hiding spots can be provided using wood or rock structures, which will make them feel secure.

By following these guidelines, you’ll create the ideal tank setup for your Phoenix Rasbora. A well-designed environment promotes their well-being, allowing them to showcase their vibrant colors and fascinating schooling behavior.

Phoenix Rasbora Water Requirements

To keep your Phoenix Rasbora healthy and happy, it’s vital to maintain proper water conditions in their aquarium. These fish thrive in acidic water with a pH ranging from 4.0 to 7.0. Make sure to frequently test your aquarium’s water parameters to ensure stability.

Phoenix Rasboras prefer a temperature range of 68 – 82.4° F (20° – 28° C). This temperature is crucial for their overall well-being, as it mimics their natural habitat found in Indonesia. Use a reliable aquarium heater and thermometer to maintain consistent water temperature.

Keep the water hardness within the 2-10 dKH range. Soft to moderately hard water is ideal for these fish since it is more compatible with their physiology.

These fish inhabit slow-moving water in their natural environment, so it’s essential to replicate this in your tank. Avoid installing a strong filter with high water flow – opt for a gentle filter instead.

Add tannins and leaf litter to your Phoenix Rasbora’s habitat to enhance their living conditions and emulate their natural environment. You can do this by placing Indian almond leaves or driftwood in your aquarium. Doing so will lower the water’s pH and provide the rasboras with shelter.

For optimal Phoenix Rasbora water requirements:

  • Maintain a pH range of 4.0 – 7.0
  • Keep the temperature between 68 – 82.4° F (20° – 28° C)
  • Soft to moderately hard water with a hardness of 2-10 dKH
  • Gentle water flow and filtration systems
  • Add tannins and leaf litter to create a natural habitat

Phoenix Rasbora Diet and Feeding

Phoenix Rasboras are micropredators; they require a varied diet to ensure their optimal health and maintain their vibrant coloration. Feeding them a mix of high-quality dry and frozen foods of appropriate size is essential for their well-being.

  • High-quality flake food and pellets specifically designed for small, tropical fish should be included in their daily diet.
  • Live, frozen, or freeze-dried foods like Artemia (brine shrimp), microworms, Tubifex worms, and finely chopped bloodworms are great for occasional feedings.
  • Feeding schedule: It’s best to feed them small portions 2-3 times a day, as this is easier for their small bellies to handle and will ensure all members of the school get enough to eat.
  • Be cautious not to overfeed, as this may lead to poor water quality and obesity; remove any uneaten food after a couple of minutes.

To further enhance their colors and ensure they receive all the necessary nutrients, consider occasionally supplementing their diet with vitamin-enriched foods or those specifically designed for enhancing color.

Keep in mind that a well-fed and healthy Phoenix Rasbora is more likely to engage in the fascinating schooling behavior that aquarists appreciate so much.

Phoenix Rasbora Care Schedule

To maintain optimal health for your Phoenix Rasbora, it’s vital to establish a consistent care schedule. By doing so, you’ll be able to keep their environment and water conditions stable, offering them the best possible environment.

  • Daily: Check their tank’s temperature, and ensure that it remains between 68 – 82.4° F (20° – 28° C). Keep an eye on ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate levels, as these fish require pristine water conditions. Feed them once or twice a day with a mix of high-quality dry and frozen foods.
  • Weekly: Perform a partial water change of about 20 – 30% to maintain water quality and compensate for evaporation. Thoroughly clean the aquarium glass, removing any algae buildup that may occur.
  • Monthly: Inspect the filter and replace or clean it as necessary to ensure efficient water filtration. Occasionally, check the pH, and make sure it stays within a range of 4.0 – 7.0. Evaluate the KH, aiming for a range between 2-10 dKH.
  • Biannual: Replace the aquarium light if needed – this is typically around every six months, but it may vary depending on your lighting setup. Assess the overall health of your live plants, and remove or replace any plants that have died or become unhealthy.

By following the care schedule outlined above, you’ll be well-prepared to maintain the health and well-being of your Phoenix Rasbora. This routine will ensure their tank continues to support their specific needs for a long and happy life.

Phoenix Rasbora Health Problems

Phoenix Rasboras are generally hardy fish, but they can still experience health problems if not provided with the proper care. Maintaining pristine water conditions and a stress-free environment is crucial to keep your fish healthy and thriving.

Some common health issues that may affect your Phoenix Rasboras include:

  • Ich: Ich, or white spot disease, is a parasitic infection that causes small white spots on the fish’s body. To treat Ich, raise the water temperature to 86°F (30°C) for a few days and use a medication specifically designed for treating Ich.
  • Fungal infections: These infections often present as fuzzy, white growths on the fish. Treatment usually consists of aquarium salt and anti-fungal medication. Be cautious when adding these to your tank, as they may harm sensitive invertebrates.
  • Fin rot: Fin rot is a bacterial infection that causes frayed or disintegrating fins. If you notice signs of fin rot, treat the tank with a broad-spectrum antibiotic. Good water quality and a proper diet can prevent this issue.
  • Swim bladder disease: This can cause your fish to have trouble swimming or maintaining their balance in the water. Most cases are caused due to poor diet or water quality. Address these issues and consider using a medication designed to treat swim bladder problems.

To prevent these health problems and ensure your Phoenix Rasboras live a long, healthy life, follow this checklist:

  • Maintain water parameters within the recommended range.
  • Keep your aquarium clean and perform regular water changes.
  • Provide a varied, high-quality diet for your fish.
  • Monitor your fish closely for any changes in behavior or appearance, acting promptly if a problem arises.
  • Quarantine new fish before adding them to your main tank.

Phoenix Rasbora Tank Mates

When it comes to selecting tank mates for your Phoenix Rasbora, consider their peaceful nature, small size, and schooling behavior. Ideally, choose other small, peaceful, and non-aggressive fish species to create a harmonious and visually interesting community tank.

Suitable tank mates include:

  • Small Tetras: Neon, Ember, and Rummy-nose Tetras make excellent companions for Phoenix Rasboras, as they are peaceful and share similar water requirements.
  • Celestial Pearl Danios: These colorful fish are peaceful and small, which makes them a perfect fit in a nano tank with Phoenix Rasboras.
  • Dwarf Gouramis: Gentle in nature, Dwarf Gouramis won’t bother or harm Phoenix Rasboras, adding color and variety to the tank.
  • Corydoras Catfish: Corydoras can peacefully coexist with Phoenix Rasboras, as they share similar habitat preferences and water parameters, and mainly stay near the bottom.
  • Cherry Shrimp: Dwarf shrimp species, especially Cherry Shrimp, can share the tank with Phoenix Rasboras, adding interest to the bottom level of your tank.

As Phoenix Rasboras are easily outcompeted for food, avoid tank mates known for their boisterous or aggressive feeding habits. In addition, large fish species may consider Rasboras as prey, so opt for small or similar-sized tank mates. 

Phoenix Rasbora Breeding

Breeding Phoenix Rasbora is an achievable goal for beginners, as these fish are relatively straightforward to breed. They are egg scatterers, meaning they lay their eggs randomly throughout the aquarium without any specific nest or breeding site.

To increase the chances of successful breeding, set up a separate breeding tank with the following:

  • A sponge filter to provide gentle water flow
  • Soft and acidic water, pH between 4.0 and 6.0
  • Plenty of plants and hiding spots, such as Java moss or spawning mops

Condition your breeding pair by giving them a high-quality, protein-rich diet consisting of live or frozen foods like Artemia, Daphnia, and Tubifex worms. This will encourage them to spawn.

Introduce the selected breeding pair into the breeding tank and maintain a consistent water temperature between 78-82°F (26-28°C). Observe their behavior for signs of courtship and spawning, which includes increased swimming activity, chasing, and touching of the abdomen area.

Once the adults have finished spawning and eggs are scattered throughout the tank, remove the adults promptly to avoid them eating the eggs. The eggs will hatch within 48-72 hours, and the fry will be free-swimming in 5-7 days.

Phoenix Rasbora fry are very tiny and require infusoria or other microscopic foods at first. You can later transition to suitably-sized foods like baby brine shrimp and micro worms. Strict water quality maintenance is crucial for the survival and growth of the fry.

With patience and attention to detail, you’ll soon have a new generation of vibrant Phoenix Rasboras swimming around, adding color and energy to your tank!


The Phoenix Rasbora is an excellent choice for beginners looking to add a vibrant and interesting species to their community aquarium. By following this comprehensive guide, you can provide an optimal environment for your fish and witness their captivating schooling behavior firsthand.

If you have any further questions or tips on Phoenix Rasbora care, feel free to leave a comment below!

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